Right Thing


Jeffrey Seglin wrestles with the big question: should people who despise George Bush bid on work for his Presidential Library? And if they do are they sell-outs?

“… I received an e-mail from a reader asking if it would be unethical for his company to bid for a contract to design the exhibits for the George W. Bush Presidential Library, given that Bush’s values and beliefs run contrary to those of the owners of the company. .. The library is, after all, designed to promote the legacy of a president whose policies they dislike. The better the design of the exhibits, the more persuasive those policies will be. Ultimately, though, the answer has to do with the designers, not with Bush. If they feel confident that they can deliver the same high-quality work that they would for, say, the Al Gore Presidential Library, then there is absolutely nothing wrong with making the bid. Anything short of their best professional effort, however, would be unacceptable, and if they can’t promise that then they are ethically bound to pass up the opportunity.”

The analogy he chooses to explore this is clothing – that a Catholic tailor should have no ethical problems making pants for a Rabbi.

It’s when he explores “real life” that it gets weird. Seglin’s example is one Cable Neuhaus, editorial director of Newsmax. Neuhaus claims not to share the bizzaro right wing politics or journalistic practices of Christopher Ruddy, the publication’s founder.

Instead he thinks of England:

“I remind myself each and every day that I am a communications professional,” Neuhaus says. “I make magazines. I owe them my best work as a magazine journalist.”

Meanwhile, Southern Methodist University says it has no deal, yet the Bush Library is letting contracts?

Tales From the Crypt

ford-write-it-when-im-gone-cover.jpg DeFrank Talk

Reaction to Tom DeFrank’s Gerald Ford tell-all “Write It When I’m Gone” shows an interesting split.

When Ford reinforces conventional wisdom it’s shouted from the rafters:

Rudy: strong. Bill: can’t keep it in his pants.Hillary: pushy dame.

reagan-ford.jpg But when Ford speaks ill of the dead turned plaster saint, not so much:

“A superficial, disengaged, intellectually-lazy showman who didn’t do his homework and clung to a naive, unrealistic, and essentially dangerous worldview. Foreign leaders have said they were appalled by Reagan’s lack of knowledge of the issues.”

Bicentennial Fever Can Only Explain So Much

From the Ford Presidential Library:


Going Not Forgotten

bush-the-time-jumpers.jpg How can they miss him when he won’t go away?

McClatchy Newspapers’ William Douglas reports on the Bush countdown clock industry, all manner of paraphernalia celebrating the eventual passage of time and power. No actual stats to stack up to the Hillary Hatin’ merchandise, but the Bush clocks are “hot.”

Gambling, With History!

truman-poker.jpg Gambling Great Harry Truman

Poker News calls the roll of Presidential poker players: Grant, Harding, both Roosevelts, Truman, Eisenhower and Nixon. They are summoning up the ghosts of gaming past to defend….online gambling!

“It’s hard to imagine that a pastime that these men, arguably considered pillars of American history, could be condemned by so many just because there is an element of luck and gamble mixed in with the skill needed to be successful in the game.Perhaps America’s legislators should take a look at these presidents and the game of poker in America’s history before condemning the online gambling industry. If the game is good enough for presidents to play, it’s good enough for people to be playing online from the comfort of their own homes.”

Better press than usual for Warren Harding – moving on up!